Articles by Jan Larson McLaughlin

Citizens pledge to protect seniors from abuse, neglect

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   As local residents joined in the “Pause for the Pledge” of Allegiance on Thursday morning, they also pledged to protect vulnerable senior citizens from elder abuse. Last year in Wood County, 338 cases of elder abuse, neglect and exploitation were investigated. That number had jumped from 260 cases the year before. “No senior citizen should ever have to be worried about theft or abuse,” Wood County Prosecuting Attorney Paul Dobson said during a program outside the Wood County Senior Center. Marc Briseno, supervisor of adult protective services in Wood County, said the number of elder abuse cases in the county continue to rise – probably due to the growing older population and the awareness being spread. The number for people to report suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation is 419-354-9669. Wood County Commissioner Doris Herringshaw talked about the overall impact of elder abuse – with approximately 5 million cases investigated every year nationally. These are “valued members of our community,” she said. Dobson referred to senior citizens as “precious gifts.” “Everything that we have today is because of someone who came before us,” he said. It is up to members of the community to be aware of elder abuse and neglect, and to report concerns so the prosecutor’s office can do its job to protect older residents, Dobson said. “We in law enforcement will continue to defend our senior citizens,” he said. State Sen. Randy Gardner and State Rep. Theresa Gavarone, both R-Bowling Green, commended Dobson for his efforts, and recognized Wood County Committee on Aging Executive Director Denise Niese for her recent state award for serving seniors. Gardner and Gavarone mentioned the $1.6 million in state capital funds that will be put toward a new senior center in Bowling Green. And Niese recognized the support of the community and elected officials in serving seniors. It takes a “team effort,” she said, to serve “the most vulnerable population.” Following is a list from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services on what is considered elder abuse: Neglect occurs when an individual’s basic needs for safety and well-being (such as medical care, adequate nutrition, socialization) are not being met. This can be through the action or inaction of the individual or another person. Exploitation is the unlawful or improper use of another person’s resources for monetary or personal benefit, profit or gain. People who exploit older adults can range from total strangers to trusted friends and family members. Physical abuse is the intentional use of physical force that results in injury, pain or impairment. It includes pushing, hitting, slapping, pinching and other ways of physically harming a person. In care settings, it can also include placing an individual in incorrect positions, force feeding, restraining or giving medication without the person’s knowledge. Emotional abuse…


‘Skimmer sweep’ being conducted at local gas stations

Wood County Auditor Matthew Oestreich inspected gas pumps along with Weights and Measures Division personnel in an effort to combat financial data theft. “Our office is engaged in a ‘skimmer sweep’ of all gas pumps in Wood County,” Oestreich said. “This is a coordinated effort by county auditors across northwest Ohio. As of this date, we have inspected 260 gas pumps in service across the county, and have found no credit card skimmers. Even though we haven’t found any skimmers thus far in this year’s sweep, we need to remind consumers to be wary of the presence of credit card skimmers on gas pumps. Vigilance by customers and filling station personnel will be the frontline defense against these criminals. I continue to encourage daily inspections by gas station owners, to supplement the inspections by our personnel.” “Skimmers” are installed by criminals to steal credit card data. The Weights & Measures Division of the Auditor’s Office inspects gas pumps at 70 stations across Wood County. Anyone suspecting the presence of a skimmer, or witnessing the tampering of a gas pump or credit card reader, should contact local law enforcement. Consumers should know that paying for gas with cash is always the safest option at the pump. Using a credit card is safer than using a debit card, as customers using a debit card risk their PIN numbers being stolen. Motorists should use pumps near the attendant, as criminals often target pumps further from view. The Wood County Auditor’s Office can be reached at 419-354-9150.


New sheriff’s deputy in town for courthouse security

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Rob Eaton walked into a mess this morning on his first day on the job as director of security for the Wood County Courthouse Complex. “I walked in and there are alarms going off everywhere. I thought – Holy Toledo,” Eaton said this morning. The phones were down because of a system-wide problem with the phone lines, causing the alarms to blare at the courthouse. “It was baptism by fire,” Wood County Sheriff Mark Wasylyshyn said as he introduced Eaton to the county commissioners this morning. The phones were back in service by 8:20 a.m. Eaton has been with the sheriff’s office for 26 years, starting on the corrections staff, moving to road patrol, serving on the Special Response Team, and most recently in the civil division. He also served 14 years in the Army National Guard. Eaton will receive an annual salary of $65,894. He has no plans to change operations in courthouse security, set up under his predecessor Becky Ewing. “I’m looking forward to this challenge of working with everyone,” he said. Since October, the security at the courthouse complex has been divided. The sheriff’s office is in charge of the grounds, buildings and entrances. The court constables, led by Ron Dicus, are in charge of the courtrooms and adult probation. The primary challenge of the job is clear, Eaton said. “Making sure everyone is safe,” from the public to county employees, he said. At the same time, citizens must feel the courthouse complex is a public facility, Wasylyshyn said. “There’s a tough balance between making everyone feel welcome” and making sure they are save, the sheriff said. Also during his meeting with the county commissioners, Wasylyshyn reported that security staff members are now offering fingerprinting in the atrium at the request of the judges. He also mentioned that the security staff is trying to be more visible in the courthouse and county office building. The commissioners acknowledged seeing the staff throughout the complex.


Wood County Amateur Radio Club to hold field day at museum

(Submitted by Wood County Amateur Radio Club) Members of the Wood County Amateur Radio Club will be participating in the national Amateur Radio Field Day exercise, June 23-24, at the Wood County Historical Museum, 13660 County Home Road, Bowling Green. Since 1933, ham radio operators across North America have established temporary ham radio stations in public locations during Field Day to showcase the science and skill of Amateur Radio. This event is open to the public and all are encouraged to attend. For over 100 years, Amateur Radio—sometimes called ham radio—has allowed people from all walks of life to experiment with electronics and communications techniques, as well as provide a free public service to their communities during a disaster, all without needing a cell phone or the Internet. Field Day demonstrates ham radio’s ability to work reliably under any conditions from almost any location and create an independent communications network. Over 35,000 people from thousands of locations participated in Field Day in 2017. “It’s easy for anyone to pick up a computer or smartphone, connect to the Internet and communicate, with no knowledge of how the devices function or connect to each other,” said Dave Isgur of the American Radio Relay League, the national association for Amateur Radio. “But if there’s an interruption of service or you’re out of range of a cell tower, you have no way to communicate. Ham Radio functions completely independent of the Internet or cell phone infrastructure, can interface with tablets or smartphones, and can be set up almost anywhere in minutes. That’s the beauty of Amateur Radio during a communications outage.” “Hams can literally throw a wire in tree for an antenna, connect it to a battery-powered transmitter and communicate half-way around the world.” he added. “Hams do this by using a layer of Earth’s atmosphere as a sort of mirror for radio waves. In today’s electronics do-it-yourself (DIY) environment, ham radio remains one of the best ways for people to learn about electronics, physics, meteorology, and numerous other scientific disciplines, and is a huge asset to any community during disasters if the standard communications infrastructure goes down.” Anyone may become a licensed Amateur Radio operator. There are over 725,000 licensed hams in the United States, as young as 5 and as old as 100. And, with clubs such as the Wood County Amateur Radio Club, it’s easy for anybody to get involved right here in Wood County. For more information about Field Day, contact Bob Willman mailto:blcksmth@wcnet.org or visit: http://www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio.


BG Transit joins National Dump the Pump Day

On Thursday, June 21, B.G. Transit will join with a host of other public transportation systems across the country to participate in the 13th annual National Dump the Pump Day. Sponsored by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), this year’s theme offers the City of Bowling Green an opportunity to educate the public about the many benefits of using public transportation. From urban to suburban to rural communities, public transportation is a vital resource to Americans, and a cornerstone of the nation’s economy and local economies. In fact, public transportation helps to make a community economically competitive. Additionally, public transportation provides economic opportunities since 87 percent of public transit trips directly impact the economy. Public transportation saves money. According to APTA’s April​ Transit Savings Report a two-person household can save, on the average, $10,063 a year by downsizing to one car. Public transportation use reduces our nation’s dependence on foreign oil by 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline a year. It also saves 37 million metric tons of carbon emissions annually. The B.G. Transit is the City of Bowling Green’s public transit system, and it is open to all for use. Hours of operation are Monday through Friday 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. For rides originating and ending within Bowling Green’s corporation limits, the general fare (one way) is $4. For rides originating and/or ending outside the city limits, the general fare is also currently $4. Half-priced fares are available to persons aged 65 years or older, children (4-13 years of age) and those with disabilities. For more information about the B.G. Transit (including how to receive the reduced fares noted above), call (419) 354-6203. To schedule a ride, call: 1-800-579-4299. For people with speech and/or hearing impairments, contact the transit through the Ohio Relay Network at: 1-800-750-0750. To learn more about the B.G. Transit, check out the website: www.bgohio.org/grants/transportation or call (419) 354-6203.


Voter purge instructions expected from the state

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The strict voter purging process used in Ohio was given the stamp of approval by the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this week. The Wood County Board of Elections – like the rest of the state – has been on hold since the legitimacy of the voter purging has been debated in the courts. But soon, people will again be dropped from the voter rolls if they don’t meet state requirements. The local board of elections will be charged with making the cuts. Carol DeJong, one of the directors at the Wood County Board of Elections, said her opinion on the court ruling was irrelevant. “We are Switzerland here at the board of elections,” she said on Wednesday. “We will of course have to wait till we get instructions from the state,” DeJong said. But since the process of reviewing voting rolls is customary in January and February, she didn’t expect any voters would be purged prior to the general election this fall. The National Voter Registration Act prohibits dropping voters too close to an election, she said. “I don’t expect that we will hear anything new until the beginning of 2019,” she said. The last time Wood County did any purging of voter names was in 2015. That year more than 3,400 registered voters in Wood County were purged from the voting rolls following a directive from the Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted. However, in 2016 a federal appeals court found that Ohio’s process for maintaining its voter rolls violated federal law. A judge ruled that Ohio voters who were improperly removed from registration lists could cast ballots in the 2016 presidential election. But since those names had already been purged, the ruling meant if a person showed up at the polls and was not on the official list, they would be allowed to vote by a provisional ballot. A provisional ballot is a paper ballot that is held in a sealed envelope with the voter’s identification. If the identification information was verified by the elections board staff, the provisional ballot was counted. Wood County Board of Elections did not encounter any citizens purged from the list, who wished to vote, Director Terry Burton said. “Those people had been through an eight-year process,” of not voting and not responding to notices, he said. But those who send back the stamped envelope will keep their place on the voter rolls. “Those people we hear from, their status is active,” DeJong said. Bowling Green sees a lot of inactive voters due to its university population, she said. “Kids are here for a while, they get registered here for a while, then they more,” DeJong said. And for those who move out of state, there is no system in place to know if they…


BG charter update and zoning meetings set for Monday

Bowling Green City Council Committee-of-the-Whole is scheduled to meet June 18 at 6 p.m. in Council Chamber, 304 N. Church St.  The purpose of the meeting is to discuss city charter amendment legislation.  A public hearing will follow at 6:45 p.m. to discuss an ordinance to amend the zoning map for property at 500 Sixth St.  City Council’s regularly scheduled meeting will begin at 7 p.m.


‘Secret Garden Tour’ focuses on six BG gardens

(Submitted by University Women of BGSU) Wood County residents looking for summer gardening inspiration have a once-only opportunity for an insider’s peek at what some of Bowling Green’s most talented private gardeners are doing in 2018. This year’s Secret Garden Tour, slated for Saturday, June 23, draws inspiration from the garden meccas of Japan, Scotland, and Polynesia, along with the best of Midwest style gardening. The annual event, sponsored by the University Women of Bowling Green State University, is open to the public. It features six memorable Bowling Green gardens, each on view from 1 to 5 p.m.  Sunday, June 24 is the rain date. The gardens, along with some of the unique features of each, are listed here: – Alice Calderonello — 307 Haskins Road. Enjoy the calm, relaxing atmosphere of shade plants, a water feature with waterfall, handmade wooden arbors, astilbe garden, and multi-level flower beds. Park on Wallace or in the nearby Wood County Hospital parking lot. – Denise Robins — 521 Lorraine Ave. Savor scenic front and back yard hosta plantings, garden ornaments, a peace pole, hand-painted bench and chairs used as planters, a variety of garden ornaments, sun and shade perennials. There are also pots filled with annuals and herbs. Park on the east side of the street. – Karen Seeliger — 208 Syracuse Drive. Sense this homeowner’s love of tropical plants through the lens of a 20-foot water feature, Bird of Paradise, Moon Flower, bouganville, hibiscus, Staghorn fern, lemon and lime trees. Visitors may park on the opposite side of the street. – Royce L. Parker — 158 S. Maple St. The obvious attractions of this exotic garden include a colorful array of flowers, an extensive water garden with koi fish, a Japanese Golden Chain Tree, hosta, ferns, and an intriguing garden statue of a head. Park on the street. – Marie Rogers — 916 Lambert Drive. It’s hard to know where to look first, with so many unique garden art items in Rogers’ yard, including a sundial from the Scottish Highlands, a metal bench, hand-carved wooden statue, and an artist-made granite table and stools. Park in the hospital parking lot. Look for the ornate gate, which will be open. – Dinah Vincent — 1423 Turnberry Court. This is a new garden, in just its second summer. Emphasis here is placed on low-maintenance perennials and annuals that attract pollinators. Parking is in the driveway or around the cul-de-sac. Secret Garden tickets, at $10, include admission to all six homes. Tickets are currently available at Grounds For Thought, 174 S. Main St., Bowling Green; during BG’s downtown Farmers Market on Wednesdays, June 13 and 20, from 4 to 7 p.m.; or by calling Phyllis Hartwell at 419-352-4248 or Karen Johnson at 419-352-8046. Tickets will also be sold on the day of the event at each…


Stay tuned: Jerry Anderson stepping down from anchor seat

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   For decades now, he has been the voice and the face that people have turned to for their news. But on Friday, Jerry Anderson will be stepping away from his news anchor role at WTOL in Toledo. He is, above all, a storyteller. Happy or sad. Simple or complex. Anderson is masterful at bringing the news into our homes and making us want to listen. How it all started Anderson’s parents lived in South Toledo when he was born. But his grandmother lived on Parker Avenue in Bowling Green, right next to Wood County Hospital. Even that has become a story for the newsman. “So they would drop off the kids at Grandma’s, and Mom would go next door to pop out another one,” Anderson said with a grin. When he was 16, his family moved to Bowling Green, and he graduated from Bowling Green High School. His first taste of the news profession occurred when at age 10, he delivered the morning Toledo Times newspaper. “One of our customers was a radio station,” Anderson said. “It was the station playing the music we listened to in the 60s. We could look in the big window and see the disc jockeys keying up the records with the big hole in the middle.” Every morning, newscaster Bob Kelly would read a comic strip from the newspaper for his radio listeners. So Anderson felt he had a vital role in delivering that comic strip on time. Then as he continued on his route, Anderson would attach his transistor radio to his handlebars and listen to the newscast. “I would pedal down Heatherdowns pretending to be the newscaster,” he said. “I was such nerd.” His interest in news came naturally, with him attending rallies with his dad for Nixon and for Goldwater. “I was always a kid who followed the news. I followed politics as a kid,” he said. And he always had the gift of gab. “I was one of five kids. I had to speak up.” Anderson gets his voice With no real experience, Anderson got his first job in radio at WFOB in 1974. He often told the joke that he was paid “weakly” – a paycheck of $82.86 every Friday. He spent four years at WFOB, coming in after Bill Blair, and being followed by Dave Horger. “I got sandwiched in between two Bowling Green classics,” Anderson said. In 1978, he moved to WSPD Radio in Toledo, then made the jump in 1980 to Channel 13 TV news in Toledo. “It seemed like the next natural job,” he said. By the end of 1981, Anderson was anchoring the news. He co-anchored with Frank Venner at 6 p.m., and soloed at 11 p.m. In 1993, he left Channel 13 and went back…


Frontier life re-enactment planned at Seven Eagles, June 23-28

(Submitted by Seven Eagles) Frontier Ohio will come life June 23-28 at Seven Eagles Historical Education Center, Grand Rapids, when re-enactors from Ohio and neighboring states converge to take part in the Friends of the Old Northwest Primitive Rendezvous. The entire camp will be open to visitors 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Sunday and Monday, June 23-25. Visitors can see a primitive encampment of people living as early pioneers, hear period music, learn about history, tour the site’s historic buildings and shop at stores to buy historical items. “This is a great place to bring your family,” said event leader Jaret Nye of Bowling Green. “Adults and kids can learn about history and see how people lived when this part of Ohio was the frontier.” Happening throughout the days will be demonstrations of frontier skills. “There will be people cooking over campfires, dipping candles, operating a blacksmith forge, shooting muzzleloaders, and probably throwing tomahawks and doing other things like sewing and spinning yarn,” Nye said. Periodic tours of the historic buildings at Seven Eagles will be available including a 200-year-old pioneer cabin and homestead; the Catfish Inn, a reproduction Scottish inn; a French trapper’s cabin; and a Native American longhouse. On the stage, the schedule for Saturday, June 23, begins at 11 a.m. with a presentation on the Battle of Fallen Timbers by Pat Stephens with the 1st Sub Legion of the United States, a partner of the Fallen Timbers Battlefield Commission, Maumee. He plans to talk about uniforms of the battle, the importance of the battle and ravine area of the battlefield. Also Saturday, visitors can hear period music on the stage all afternoon. Period musicians expected to take part during the week are “Buffalo Woman” Jane Cassidy of Virginia, Hand Hewn of Delta, Amie and Bruce Brodie of Oregon (Ohio), Steve Keefer of Sidney, and others. Sunday, June 24, begins at 10 a.m. with an old-time church service conducted by Mike Kaufman of Defiance, who portrays a frontier preacher. A muzzleloader shooting demonstration is set for 11 a.m. Sunday as well as period music on the stage. At 1 p.m. Sunday, visitors may watch rendezvous participants take part in Highland Games, a rendition of Scottish contests in which men wearing kilts and also ladies compete in various contests of skill and strength such as the caber toss, the sheaf pitch and the haggis toss. Featured presenter for Monday, June 25, is Carol Jarboe, of Woodburn, Kentucky, who will tell her first-person story at 11 a.m. She portrays Maggie Delaney, an Irish indentured servant in the 1700s. Visitors later in the week may visit a portion of the encampment 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, June 26-28. Tours will be available on request, and shopping is available at period stores. Food and beverages are to be available all week….


Dog warden reports on changes at county dog shelter

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The Wood County dog warden is not like an old dog that can’t be taught new tricks. Chief Dog Warden Andrew Snyder said Tuesday morning that he is always looking for ways to improve operations at the county dog shelter. Those changes include more visible signage for the shelter, more dog license sales, increased outdoor exercise for the dogs, improvements to the dog park, decreases in dogs euthanized, and increased efforts to find homes for impounded dogs. Last Friday, approximately 50 protesters rallied in downtown Bowling Green to protest dogs being euthanized at the Wood County Dog Shelter. Snyder reported to the county commissioners Tuesday that the dog shelter’s euthanasia rate is 8 percent – far lower than the 40 percent rate a decade ago. Of the 184 dogs impounded so far this year, 81 were reclaimed by their owners, 45 were adopted by new owners, 35 were taken in by rescue organizations, and 15 were euthanized. “I think our adoption statistics show we have a really good relationship with our rescues,” he said. Commissioner Doris Herringshaw asked if some dog owners surrender their dangerous dogs to the shelter for euthanasia. “Do they bring them to you with that in mind?” Snyder said that does occur, and added that some owners drop off older ill dogs. On Monday, the shelter took in four new dogs, he said. One was a pit bull whose owner has been incarcerated, and the family cannot take in the dog because it is aggressive toward other dogs. “We take in a dog like that and do our best to find that dog a home,” Snyder said. But fewer rescue groups are available to take in such dogs. “It’s a never ending process to try to find a home for these dogs.” Snyder reported on some improvements to the commissioners, such as: Revisions to a kennel worker’s hours now allow the dogs to get outdoor exercise time six days a week. A new, more visible sign will be erected at the dog shelter, located in the county complex off East Gypsy Lane Road. Other signage options are being considered at an entrance to the complex. Workers have made more door-to-door checks for dog licenses, which should result in more license sales this year. More “dangerous” dog licenses have been purchased, as required by state law. “So we’re seeing more compliance there,” Snyder said. Changes are also planned at the county dog park, located next to the dog shelter. The three padlocked entrances to the dog park will be replaced with one keypad entrance. That should make it more convenient for members, and more likely they will lock it when leaving. Drainage issues will be fixed, and a water cooler system will be installed, Snyder said. Running water to…


Family of boy who had skull surgery wants to help others in same situation

(Submitted by Angie Bradford) A 5K walk/run will be held to raise awareness about craniosynostosis and in honor of a Wayne boy who was born with it. The walk/run will be held Saturday, June 16, starting at 9 a.m., in the Wayne Village Park. Wade Bradford was born with craniosynostosis and underwent reconstructive skull surgery at 3 months old to give his brain room to develop and grow normally. Now his family would like to help other families whose children need the same surgery. Craniosynostosis is a condition in which the skull sutures close prematurely, causing problems with normal brain and skull growth and premature closure of the fontanelles (soft spots). Premature closure of the sutures may also cause the pressure inside of the head to increase and the skull or facial bones to change from a normal, symmetrical appearance. The 5K event is a “virtual” walk/run to raise money for Cranio Care Bears, a non-profit organization established in 2011 by two moms who children had craniosynostosis. The mission is to spread awareness, support and compassion through care packages to families of children facing surgery for craniosynostosis. The care packages include items for the child and family to relieve the stress accompanying this very serious surgery. Cranio Care Bears Virtual 5K Walk/Run is a distance of 5K (or more) that the runner does any place, any time, any where, https://run4cranio.org/sales-page20502999. It is a “Pay it Forward” fundraiser to help raise awareness and fund the shipping of care packages worldwide to families undergoing children’s skull surgery. Your participation will allow the Cranio Care Bears organization to ship more than 150 care packages every month. All registrants will receive a printable race bib (or upgrade to deluxe bib) and a Cranio Care Bear medal. Medals and upgraded back numbers are shipped to participants after registration. If you complete the 5K by June 30 and upload a photo on the “Finish Line” Facebook page, you will be entered to be entered into prize drawings.


Farmers Market to host mile fun run & vegetable relay

(Submitted by BG Parks and Recreation Department) Join us Wednesday, June 13, at the BG Farmers Market for the 2nd Annual Market Mile Fun Run & Vegetable Relay Race. The event is open to youth and adults, runners and walkers. The Market Mile Fun Run is an individual event, while the Vegetable Relay 5K Race is a three-person team race where each member of the team runs approximately 1 mile for a team total of approximately 3 miles (5k).   The Relay Race is for participants age 12 and older.  Teams can be made up of any combination of youth/teens/adults and male/female. Participation is free. Pre-register is needed to guarantee yourself a place in the race by calling (419)354-6223 or register at the BG Parks & Recreation table at the Farmers Market on race day.  All participants must be registered and checked in by 5:20 p.m. on June 13.  For more information, call Ivan at (419)354-6223 or email at ikovacevic@bgohio.org


Niese awarded for meeting changing needs of seniors

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Old age is not the equivalent of being obsolete, according to Denise Niese, executive director of the Wood County Committee on Aging. That attitude led Niese to her career in gerontology. “I always enjoyed the population,” Niese said. “This is back when people didn’t know how to spell gerontology – let alone have degrees in it.” That attitude has now led Niese to an award from the Ohio Association of Senior Citizens named after a predecessor in her profession – Muriel Bertsch. “She was an amazing woman,” Niese said of Bertsch, the founder of the first senior center in Ohio in 1954. The facility – called Partners in Prime – is still in existence. Bertsch also was instrumental in passage of the Older Americans Act in 1965. “She advocated for seniors,” Niese said. “She was a community organizer before community organizing was a vocation.” And now Niese has received an award for following in Bertsch’s footsteps. “We would like to honor you for all you have done to protect Ohio’s most vulnerable persons, including our senior citizens,” the Ohio Association of Senior Citizens wrote to Niese. Niese took over as director of the Wood County Senior Center in 2005. She not only enjoys the population she serves, but also the administration and policies involved. “That reinforces why you are doing what you do,” she said. “Our constituents are apt to let us know if we’re not doing it right.” The needs of seniors have changed just in the time Niese has been in the profession. The population is growing, and the changes in health insurance often send seniors home from the hospital when they still have significant needs. So there is more demand for medical services and physical accommodations in seniors’ homes. Many seniors are more willing to have assessments done to make sure they stay mentally sharp. Many more are staying home longer, so they need home-delivered meals. Programming has to meet a broad swath of needs – from exercises for 50-year-olds, to meals for those over age 100. “It’s a wider spectrum in age than we’ve ever programmed for in the past,” Niese said. Niese has advocated for that range of programming – and for a new senior center in Bowling Green to meet those needs. The center, which could open in 2020, will include more room for activities like bridge, shuffleboard, tai chi, yoga, painting and a writing club.  There will also be respite care for people with dementia, and a “memory café.” “Today’s seniors are very different from when I started,” she said. And Niese intends to keep advocating for their needs as they continue to change.


Streets to be closed for Firefly Nights on Friday

In conjunction with the June Firefly Nights Festival scheduled for June 15, certain street closures and parking restrictions will be imposed in downtown Bowling Green. Beginning at 2 p.m. on Friday on-street parking will be prohibited on Main Street. At 6 p.m. on Friday, Main Street, between Court Street and Washington Street, will be closed to vehicular traffic. While Main Street is closed, no through traffic will be permitted on Clough Street. Wooster Street will remain open for east and westbound traffic throughout the festival. During the Main Street closing, detour routes for local and truck traffic will be posted. All streets will reopen and parking will be reinstated on Friday following the event.